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MLB trade deadline: Rays acquire veteran slugger Nelson Cruz from Twins in four-player deal

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The Tampa Bay Rays on Thursday acquired veteran DH Nelson Cruz from the Minnesota Twins as a part of a four-player trade. The Rays will even be receiving minor league right-hander Calvin Faucher in the trade, whereas minor league right-handers Joe Ryan and Drew Strotman are headed to the Twins. 

Cruz, 41, is as soon as once more producing at a excessive degree regardless of his superior baseball age. This season, he is batting .294/.370/.537 with 19 residence runs in 85 video games. That’s hardly an aberration, as Cruz departing the Rangers by way of free company following the 2013 season has put up an OPS+ of 150 whereas averaging 45 residence runs per 162 video games performed. He’s sitting on 436 profession residence runs. Cruz is eligible for free company this coming offseason and is owed the stability of a $13 million wage for 2021. 

The Rays at current are in second place in the AL East and firmly in wild card place in the AL. As such, the reigning American League champs are robust bets to return to the postseason. Despite their success to this point, they’ve struggled to get constant manufacturing from the DH spot. In all, 11 completely different gamers have cycled by way of the place, they usually’ve mixed for a 2021 slash line of .219/.305/.389.

Cruz supplies a right away and substantial improve. Meanwhile, Austin Meadows — the Rays’ main DH earlier than the Cruz acquisition — can see time on the outfield corners and infrequently spell Cruz in opposition to robust right-handers. As for Faucher, 25, he is pitched to a 4.64 ERA and a couple of.09 Okay/BB ratio throughout components of 4 minor league seasons. In 2021, he is struggled throughout 19 reduction appearances for Double-A Wichita. 

On the Minnesota aspect of issues, Ryan, 25, is a former seventh-rounder with an ERA of two.70 and a Okay/BB ratio of 6.06 in three seasons as a part of the Rays’ system. Coming into 2020, Baseball America named him because the No. 98 prospect in all of baseball. Strotman, 24, was a fourth-rounder in 2017, and he is received a 3.12 ERA and a couple of.38 Okay/BB ratio over 4 minor league seasons. 

The Cruz deal does sign a willingness on the a part of the fourth-place Twins to promote of a few of their productive veterans. According to current experiences, they might be much less inclined to trade gamers over whom they’ve management past the present season. The dealing of Cruz is not actually a inform both means since he was in his stroll yr. The Rays, meantime, have ramped up the strain on the first-place Red Sox to make their very own splash earlier than the July 30 deadline.

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